Monday, January 20, 2014

It Lives to Suck Again!

The carpet in the house that we moved into has a fuzz problem.  Lots of little balls of carpet fuzz are all over the surface, and keep reappearing after vacuuming.  A little online research indicates that this is common with new carpets  But in the process of preparing to have our neighbors over tonight, our vacuum stopped working.  The sound was probably twice as loud as normal (and it's normally equivalent to a 747), it smelled like it was burning, and it wasn't working at all.

I cleaned out the roller and tried it again, to no avail.  Amanda has owned it since before we were married (over 13 years ago), so we were considering whether to just trash it and look around for a new one.  As a last ditch effort though, and since we have many other things that we need to spend money on, I thought I would take it down to the basement workshop and take it apart to see if I could figure out what's wrong with it.

I requested Lucas' help with it, to which he complained incessantly, until I was at the end of my tolerance and threatened punishment.  Once we started taking it apart though, and I was showing him how it worked he started to gain interest.  Once the major vacuum pieces were separated I realized that the whole suction path from bottom to bag was clogged with compressed carpet fuzz. 

Lucas ended up somewhat enjoying himself, using the needle nose pliers to help pull out what turned out to be a small mountain worth of carpet fuzz.  
Now the old Hoover lives to suck another day!

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Snowy Sunny Sabbath

Despite us not making it to church this morning, I had a great day with the kids/family.

I made my breakfast specialty of egg/cheese/ham sandwiches. Then I went outside to shovel the driveway (with the kids following me), and we all ended up playing in the snow.  Despite it being chilly (25 degrees), the sun was out so it felt good to be outdoors.  I pushed the kids in sleds down the driveway and we all had snowball fights too. Then before lunch I spent a few minutes to play LEGO with them (all 3 kids).

Later (after nap/rest time), we went to our gym and ran around their indoor field kicking soccer balls and shooting around on the basketball court. Finished with Taco Bell for dinner (not healthy, but tasty) and ice cream sandwiches for dessert.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Thoughts on Homosexuality

There is a story in the news recently about the latest "The Bachelor" contestant saying the he doesn't think there should be a gay bachelor show.  He gave a few reasons, but people are in an uproar about it, calling him a homophobe and every other name under the sun.  The article is here:

What bothered me though is that (according to the article) he didn't say "they're going to burn in hell" or "it's a disgusting disgrace". He just voiced his disagreement with having it as the main topic of a TV reality show. To me, this indicates that if anyone says ANYTHING negative AT ALL about the gay lifestyle, no matter how minor, then they're going to be attacked and labeled as being full of hate and fear.

However, while I don't think his statements warranted the public reaction and comments, I don't think I would have used the same wording either, so here are my thoughts about the topic:

I basically equate homosexuality morally with looking at pornography.  I know most men struggle with the issue to varying degrees and most/many succumb to it, maybe even frequently (depending on the individual).  Some men don't struggle against it at all, they just do it (view it) whenever they want to and/or are able to, and they don't care.  They have no moral objection to it, especially if they're not Christians. 

As for myself, I'm not going to claim to be immune to the temptation, but I think it's morally wrong so I do my best to avoid it.  Sometimes it's a difficult struggle, but I want to do the right thing so I keep up the fight.  I don't have any hatred or animosity for guys that give in to the temptation with reckless abandon - I enjoy them as people/friends/human beings and their private life doesn't affect me so I don't care. 

If they were to ask me whether I agree with or accept these choices though then I would say "No, I don't".  Because I don't think it's the right thing to do.  If they're not a Christian though then they use a different moral standard then I do, so my reasons means nothing to them.  If they ARE a Christian though, then I would probably be more resolved in explaining to them why I think God demands a different standard than the way they are living, and that they should consider trying to quit their porn habits.  If not though, then that is between them and God and I've said my peace with them. 

So it is with homosexuality.  I think God has a higher standard for us, but if they're not Christians then I have no ground to stand on, nor do I really care.  So I'll just enjoy them as people/friends/human beings, since their choices regarding their private life doesn't affect me personally.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Unexpected Outdoor Activities

I finally convinced my two older kids to go outside with me today.  Amanda was picking up Clara from a birthday party, and I promised to spend some time with Lucas and Emily.  We planned to do various things like playing LEGO with my son and having a tea party with my daughter.  While those are fun things to do, I noticed the sun was out and while it was pretty cold (in the 40's) there was no snow on the ground.  I had the idea then to head outside and throw a ball around instead.

After much persuading (they wanted to stay indoors), we headed out to the front yard.  I had just grabbed a couple of balls from the garage and secured our dog on her cable in the yard when I noticed a couple waking by with their young boy and dog.  I realized that it was my co-worker - the same one that we just noticed (this morning, in fact) attend our church too.  I found out that they had just moved into the neighborhood in September.

While I was talking to him and his wife, the neighbor kids walked over and started playing with my kids.  By the time I was finished talking with my friend/co-worker, the kids had disappeared with the neighbors.  With the kids occupied, I seized the moment to work on my car for a few minutes, then decided to explore our wooded (and somewhat treacherously sloped) backyard.  This is something I've wanted to do since we moved in, but the conditions have never been favorable due to slippery fall leaves or snow.

When Lucas and Shane (the neighbor boy) noticed me in our backyard, Shane said he could show me their trail (in their backyard, which is flatter and easier to traverse).  We ended up exploring down through the woods, and into areas that I had no idea existed.  The still-present fall leaves and mud from the melted snow made climbing the slopes pretty challenging.  One time I grabbed the trunk of a small tree for support, but it was a dead tree and it immediately snapped off.  The good news is that i didn't slip down the hill from the immediate lack of support, but the bad news is that Shane (the neighbor boy) was right behind me and the broken tree hit him in the face when it gave way!  He didn't have any noticeable cuts or bruises thankfully, but it was still pretty unnerving, especially since I just met their family today (great first impression)!

In the end, it was a fun and outdoorsy evening - I met some new neighbors (one of which is also a co-worker), and I finally got better acquainted with our natural surroundings.  I also realized that the gulley in our backyard is somewhat (and unfortunately) unique to our particular property, but I'm still excited and determined to make the best of it.  Eventually I plan to figure out how to make a trail through our backyard too.  One (precarious) step at a time though.
counter stats